ACCES-VR Marks Disability Employment Awareness Month

BY TANIQUA HUNTER

“Hiring Good People is Good Business,” that’s our mantra at ACCES-VR. ACCES-VR is an acronym for Adult Career & Continuing Education Services. An agency housed in the New York State Education Department, our goal is to prepare and support individuals with disabilities in finding gainful employment.

What people may not know is that servicing the Queens business community is also our focus. Every year we help approximately 13,000 people find jobs throughout the State of New York. Our mission is to actively connect with employers to support their hiring needs and expand their pool of viable talent.

Taniqua L. Hunter is a Local Workforce Development and Business Relations Representative in the Queens District Office. Reach her at Taniqua.Hunter@nysed.gov.

Every October, ACCES-VR celebrates National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). Dating back to 1945, this annual event highlights employers who understand that having a diverse workforce is a success to any business’ bottom line. NDEAM events bring attention to opportunities made available to qualified workers, who just happen to have disabilities.

Employers are nominated to receive recognition awards for their dedication to making interviews more accessible, providing reasonable accommodations, increasing hiring, providing supportive onboarding practices, and fostering career advancement.

Last year local Queens employers such as Kepco Inc., Fresh Direct, and the Queens Botanical Garden were recognized for their exemplary dedication to hiring workers with disabilities.

This year’s NDEAM event is taking place on October 5 at the Heritage Club. ACCES-VR is eager to celebrate a new group of employers embracing inclusion in the workplace.

ACCES-VR aims to be a resource to local businesses. We want more employers to learn about our services and become partners in our NDEAM celebrations. Our Business Services Team can provide an array of services free of charge.

We assist with recruitment needs, worker retention services, consultation regarding reasonable accommodations, applying for tax credits and provide training on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and employment. We also have two wage reimbursement programs: Work Try Out and On the Job Training.

These work incentives can save employers money with hiring and onboarding costs. We are committed to supporting local business to help facilitate more hiring of our skilled talent pool.

For more information about ACCES-VR and NDEAM events, visit acces.nysed.gov/vr/ndeam.

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